If you’ve been prescribed marijuana as medicine, you’ll want to educate yourself about it as much as possible. Fortunately, there is excellent information available about how medical marijuana is best used and about how different people with different preferences and needs may get the most out of it.

Ingestion vs. Smoking

The two main options that patients have for using medical marijuana are ingestion and smoking. Ingesting marijuana can be done by cooking a variety of different foods utilizing marijuana as one of the ingredients. In marijuana, the ingredients that actually produce the desired effect are called cannabinoids. Cannabinoids are soluble in fact, so they can be cooked into foods that have oil or butter in them.

Some people prefer to use a cannabis tincture, which is a way of ingesting marijuana through products that contain alcohol. These tinctures tend to give the desired effects a bit more quickly but the effects may not last as long in most individuals. Eating baked foods prepared with marijuana will generally take longer as far as feeling the effects goes, but the effects may also last longer.

Either method allows people who prefer not to smoke anything at all to get their medication without having to smoke marijuana.

Smoking is the form of ingesting marijuana with which most people are likely familiar. It is generally smoke out of one of three common devices:

  • A marijuana cigarette or “joint”
  • A water pipe, sometimes called a “bong”
  • A glass, wood or metal pipe

The only difference between these smoking methods is that some people report that the cooling effects of the water on marijuana smoke when it is smoked through a bong make it easier to inhale. A joint can be rolled using any common rolling paper – though some people prefer high end rolling papers, which may burn more slowly – and there are a variety of different types of pipes you can choose from to smoke marijuana.


According to Health Canada, there is little difference between these different methods of delivery and how much individual patients should use. Their recommendations hold that anywhere from 1 to 3 g of cannabis – dried – is typically what individuals using medical marijuana should count on using, no matter how they plan on taking it.

Part of the advantage of purchasing marijuana from marijuana dispensaries is the fact products are grown under very controlled conditions. Between choosing a delivery mechanism that works best for them and being able to get a consistent product, patients utilizing medical marijuana can figure out how they would prefer to smoke, eat or otherwise take it and don’t have to worry about one batch being significantly stronger than the next, for instance.

You should always consult with your own physician about how much medical marijuana you should be ingesting during the course of a day, but the 1 to 3 grams recommendation is generally accepted. No matter how much you need to take, there are plenty of different options for you as far as actually getting your marijuana is concerned.

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